Veronica Harrod reports concerns about a new Horowhenua District Council infrastructure manager, appointed last August, but gone less than four months later.
Council’s chief executive David Clapperton said Andrew Grant was employed as General Manager Infrastructure Services on 20 August 2018 and his last day of employment was the 14 December, 2018.
Going to the Ombudsman
Questions that will be referred to the Office of the Ombudsman because Mr Clapperton has refused to answer them include:
Was his resignation voluntary?
If not, why did his employment with HDC end?
What are the reasons?
Was Mr Grant provided with a severance payment over and above his base salary?
If he was how much did Mr Grant receive over and above his base salary?
No interviews please
Mr Grant has not responded to requests for an interview.
The abrupt departure comes at a critical time as the Council is applying for long overdue resource consents for essential infrastructure services including stormwater and wastewater.
There are also challenges around the provision of water supplies — and pressures over essential services after an explosion in land and property development.
When asked how confident the public could be that essential services are being properly managed, Mr Clapperton said quarterly reports were presented to the Finance Audit and Risk Committee.
He said the reporting involves financial and non-financial reporting, including operational performance.
CEO says information is publicly available
“This information is publically available and should provide confidence that established service levels are being delivered,” he says.
Mr Grant’s departure came less than four days after Mr Grant directly advertised to appoint an Asset Planning Manager with, “Sound understanding of asset management and knowledge of asset management systems.”
Acting manager appointed
Mr Clapperton said Rob Green will be the acting group manager Infrastructure Services while Council recruits another Group Manager Infrastructure Services.
Although Council’s previous advertisement for the role is still available online an advertisement for the current role cannot be found.
Council has been asked to provide more information on where the role is advertised.
The previous Group Manager Infrastructure Services Gallo Saidy worked for the Council between 2014 and 2018.
The only qualification Mr Gallo has listed on his professional network Linked In profile is a Master of Business Administration in Business Administration and Management, General 2015-2017.
Mr Saidy was also acting chief executive at times when Mr Clapperton was away.